By Fatih Hafiz Mehmet
The Foreign Ministry on Friday said the recent Greek court decision to release a Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO)-linked coup plotter demonstrates once again that Greece protects coup plotters.
On Thursday, the Greek Council of State -- the highest administrative court in Greece -- ordered the release of ex-Turkish soldier Suleyman Ozkaynakci under judicial control.
In a written statement, the Foreign Ministry said Ozkaynakci had participated in the July 15, 2016, defeated coup in Turkey.
The statement said the Greek court's decision showed that necessary measures had not been taken regarding a "traitor" who participated in the defeated coup attempt.
"It showed once again that Greece is a country which protects the coup plotters," the statement said.
Greek authorities' statements indicate that the remaining coup plotters would also be released in the upcoming days, it said.
The situation cannot be explained as a routine practice related to the detention period as claimed by Greek authorities, it said.
"The Greek judiciary, by rejecting our requests several times for the extradition of the putschist traitors who targeted our democracy, has paved the ground for such an outcome, which offends the public conscience," it said.
It added that Turkey's determination for the extradition of the fugitive putschists and for them to be tried in Turkey would continue.
Ozkaynakci's asylum background
Ozkaynakci's asylum request had been accepted in December 2017 by an independent asylum commission, but later the Greek government raised an objection to it.
He was released briefly after being granted asylum but was arrested again after the government raised an objection to the asylum.
The Greek Council of State evaluated the government’s objection on Thursday and ordered the release of Ozkaynakci under strict control until the results of asylum applications of all eight Turkish coup plotters come out.
The Council of State is expected to make a final decision over the asylum requests of all the eight ex-Turkish soldiers on May 4.
According to the Greek law, the maximum detention period is 18 months, which will expire at the end of May for the all the coup plotters.
The eight former Turkish soldiers had fled to Greece a day after the defeated 2016 Turkish coup. They are accused by the Turkish authorities of being coup plotters and members of Fetullah Terrorist Organisation (FETO).
FETO and its U.S.-based leader Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup on July 15, 2016, which left 250 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.
They are currently held in custody by Greek authorities. The case has been a bone of contention between the two countries.
The issue was also discussed during Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s landmark visit to Greece in 2017.